Wednesday, February 27, 2008

I finally figured out what to do with this here in-ter-net

I've been in a bit of a bloggy slump lately. Just as I go through periods where I'd rather do anything than do a scrapbook page or something else crafty, I happen to be in a period where I just don't have a lot to say. And, I guess I've been in a crafting slump too because I haven't done Sew Crafty Friday for a few weeks. I will have something to show this week though, as upcoming March birthdays have forced my hand.

Despite the writing slump, though, I did want to mention something that has amazed me.

When we first got the internet, I had no idea what I was supposed to do with it. Don set it up and while he was gone at work or school, I tried to find something to do with it. I remembered seeing a website listed on some canned food and typed in the address. Oh, boy. I just couldn't see how this would enrich my life at all. I eventually took a class at the community college on the internet and discovered that I could chat with people in different countries about things. It was fascinating, but I definitely wasn't hooked. What did I care, really, that some lady in Europe thought that cardinals were pretty too?

Obviously, a lot has changed between then and now. Gone are the days of free internet (remember when NetZero was actually called that because it didn't cost anything???) and dial up is pretty rare anymore. And the internet has become a part of my life in ways I never dreamed.

I have 3 forums that I visit regularly to learn and both ask and answer questions. It is an invaluable resource when I need to know what my whey is supposed to look like or to learn of a natural way to treat my kid's warts. I can learn what to do about my aggressive rooster (who will be entering "freezer camp" this weekend due to what I learned) and how to set up my rabbits so they can be out in the pasture come spring. And there are several ladies that I've been able to "sit at the feet of" and learn from, Titus 2-style.

But, the most amazing thing that the internet has provided is real, living, breathing friends.

My first treasure was found when a lady bought some stamping supplies from me through a stamping yahoo group. She noticed my return address and told me that she was moving to the same small military town. When she arrived, we invited her and her husband to church and had them over for dinner. She ended up moving in right down the street and we were good friends until we moved to Arizona.

As we were getting ready to move, I joined a Phoenix-area homeschooling yahoo group and met several people for field trips and get-togethers once we arrived in Arizona.

I met my midwife here in Nebraska through the internet, which was an amazing leap of faith on her part, given the legal climate of midwifery here. That was just a miracle in my eyes.

And most recently, we have met a family through Don's blog who just moved nearby. They are such a neat family, with goals of doing much of the same things that we are doing/plan to do. Spiritually, we are on the same page, which is always an amazing blessing. We had them over for dinner a few weeks ago and then they had us over last Friday. We brought them a dozen eggs and returned home with a gallon of honey from their bees. Talk about an uneven trade!!! The kids have really enjoyed each other and as we were leaving their house that night, before we even got out of their driveway, Caleb and Meagan were asking when we could see them again.

While the internet can really suck up time, and, let's face it, can be full of disgusting filth, it can be such an awesome source. But most importantly, it can be used by God to bless us with treasures we never dreamed the wealth of friendships.

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